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Carmen Dolores Blackham Rindfleisch

 

Last updated 12/16/2020 at 5:25pm

Carmen Dolores Blackham Rindfleisch

Carmen Dolores Blackham Rindfleisch was born Sept. 17, 1976, to Kim and Colette Blackham in Provo, Utah. She died Dec. 3, 2020.

Carmen was the oldest of four children. The family spent a few years in Green River, Wyoming, where she endured emergency kidney surgery as a 3-year-old. When Carmen was in second grade, her family settled in Fallbrook. She attended Maie Ellis Elementary School, La Paloma Elementary School, Potter Jr. High School, Bonsall Middle School and graduated from Fallbrook High School.

Growing up, Carmen enjoyed ballet, community theater, singing with the Fallbrook High Madrigals, creative writing and activity in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

After high school, Carmen attended Brigham Young University where she earned her bachelor's degree in English and sang in the BYU Women's Chorus. During that time, she volunteered to serve an 18-month mission in Honduras, where she taught the gospel of Jesus Christ in Spanish, survived the devastating Hurricane Mitch and made lifelong friends.

Carmen met and married Carl Rindfleisch in San Diego in 2004. They married in the San Diego Temple. She earned her master's degree in English and taught for BYU-Idaho online while mothering her two precious daughters, Carleigh and Carissa. They lived in Poway and Salt Lake City, Utah, and enjoyed many memorable family trips planned by Carl.

Carmen was delighted when she and Carl were able to find a home in her hometown of Fallbrook. She engaged in the community by volunteering at Bonsall Elementary where her girls got to have their grandmother as their kindergarten teacher, joining local choirs and enrolling her family in North County Academy of Dance. One of her life's highlights was dancing as an entire family in the Nutcracker.

Carmen had a gift for touching hearts. She made friends wherever she went, and she maintained those friendships for life with thoughtful gestures, kind notes and planning events to include everyone.

Her friends describe her rare quality of childlike innocence, which infused her life with joy for every holiday. Carmen created reasons to celebrate – she was always planning a party, down to her festive outfits.

She would move heaven and earth to attend events for friends and family; even in a cancer-weakened body, she would be there. She loved all kinds of music, and she could recount dates and details of long-ago events with uncanny facility. These gifts contributed to her extraordinary teaching ability.

Carmen's belief in her Savior Jesus Christ and her love for her family motivated her to fight colon cancer for the last 5 1/2 years of her life. Her faith-filled social media posts inspired thousands of people.

Carmen is survived by her loving husband Carl, daughters Carleigh and Carissa, parents Kim and Colette Blackham, sister Natalie (Jason) Conforto, brothers Clint (Brooke) Blackham and Seth Blackham, parents-in-law Winn and Susan Rindfleisch, sisters-in-law Shanna (Kamron) Riches, Meredith (Michael) Nassar, brother-in-law Adam Rindfleisch, countless nieces and nephews, relatives and friends who love her.

A viewing is being held Friday, Dec. 18, from 4-8 p.m. at Berry-Bell and Hall Mortuary.

 

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